Giving Freely

November 13, 2013
Forgiveness, Jennifer Hadley

My prayer is to be generous of the heart!

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I used to have a skewed idea of generosity. I thought being generous had to do with things material. I thought I was generous if I was a big giver. As I became more in tune with myself through meditation and prayer and as a result of my practice of nonviolence and compassion, I discovered that I wasn’t always giving from a place of true generosity, but instead from a place of lack within my own self. I was giving to get a sense of self-worth.
When I got still with myself, I found that sometimes I was giving out of my need for reassurance. I had a need to be liked, admired and appreciated. I discovered that my need to be seen or felt was often a motivator for my giving and so I wasn’t really being generous at all. I sought approval as much as I desired to share my gifts and talents. I thought that through giving I could get people’s good opinion of me. Giving to get is the way of commerce, it’s the way of the world and I’d not seen that it was my way of living, and often my reason for giving, especially in my relationships.
I feel so grateful to have learned that true generosity comes from the Spirit. It comes from the heart and never the head. It’s the way of the Divine. True generosity is never a calculated expression that has to do with keeping score or getting something in return. Once I learned this, I began to see that when I am generous of my heart and my energy then I’m giving what people really like to receive most. Even people who feel destitute and seem to need money badly still can appreciate love, patience, recognition and encouragement FAR more than they do money. The destitute can tell us that the heart can die of starvation while the body continues.
“… to rejoice greatly in the good of others, to love with such generosity of heart that your love is still a dear possession in absence or unkindness – these are the gifts which money cannot buy,” says Robert Louis Stevenson. Money cannot buy these gifts because they come through us from the Divine and we are given to so freely. It is my pleasure and joy, my imperative to let them flow through my life freely.

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